The Himmel Brothers Co. specialized in the manufacture of steel store fronts. Late on Wednesday evening, May 8, 1946, Hamden firefighters responded to a structure fire at the company's classic Art Deco building at 1409 Dixwell Avenue. The incident went to two alarms. According to the article below, the fire got started in the drafting room and was confined to the office area of the building. Engines 1, 2 and 3, the ladder truck and rescue squad responded.
One of the most striking features of this building, completed in 1938, were two massive stainless steel front doors.
New Haven Evening Register, Thursday, May 9, 1946
Himmel Brothers Building - May 1946 and May 2016
According to their 1946 catalog, "for over 30 years Himmel Brothers Co. have specialized entirely in the development and manufacture of store front constructions."
Himmel Brothers eventually merged with H.A. Leeds on Leeder Hill Drive. The original Dixwell Avenue building has deteriorated since it was vacated over ten years ago. It is now boarded up and has no roof. Sad.
Today the Himmel building is roofless. Sky can been seen above the plywood that now
covers the opening where two massive stainless steel double doors once hung. The steel doors can be seen in the photo below, courtesy of the Hamden Historical Society.
Hamden's Bicentennial Celebration started with a Sunday, May 11, 1986 parade that included an HFD marching contingent and some the department's newer apparatus. The Bicentennial Parade, which took the place of the traditional Memorial Day Parade that year, began near Skiff Street and ended at the Miller Library. It was the first Hamden parade on Whitney Avenue since the early 1950s.
Three-quarters of the Color Guard - Lieutenant Howie Hurlburt, Jr., Firefighter Jim Moore and Firefighter Paul Reutenauer
Completing the Color Guard was Lieutenant Dave Strawhince at the far right.
Turning the corner from Whitney to Dixwell. (Photo by Denise)
Hamden's Bicentennial Parade Sunday, May 11, 1986
In May 1986, Storer Cable TV videotaped Hamden's Bicentennial Parade, which was broadcast on the company's local access station. A four minute excerpt of the video, featuring the Hamden Fire Department marching unit and apparatus, is now on YouTube. Also included are the Mix District Volunteer Fire Co. marching unit and its vintage fire apparatus.
Originally posted 8/19/11
CLICK on photo to view video
Getting ready, Firefighters Jimmy Moore and Paul Reutenauer. Platoon 3 all the way!
Hamden celebrated its "Sesquicentennial" fifty years earlier with a huge townwide celebration that, of course, included a parade. Check this out . . .
Sesquicentennial Parade - June 16, 1936
80-Year-Old Hamden Parade Film Coming Soon
June 16, 2016 marks the 80th anniversary of Hamden's 150th Anniverary (Sesquicentennial) Parade. The Hamden Historical Society recently discovered in its archives two 100' reels of 16mm home movies of the 1936 parade. The films, one color and the other black-and-white, were shot by Dr. Walter S. Lay, Hamden's medical examiner at the time of the event.
The line of march proceeded north on Whitney from just south of Dixwell, turned into James Street and concluded at Legion Field. The Hamden Fire Department marching contingent included Chief Loller, his three assistant chiefs and fourteen paid drivers. Marching right behind the career members was the Highwood Volunteer Fire Association with its original 1896 hose cart displayed on a flatbed truck.
Dr. Lay's film has been digitzed and edited into an eight-minute DVD. Thanks to Rachel Hartley's book, A History of Hamden, Connecticut (1943), all of the parade units seen in the film are identified. The film, which is peppered here and there with bits of local historical info, concludes with excerpts from athletic competition at Legion Field among various age groups of boys and girls.
In conjunction with this year's 230th anniversary of the founding of the Town of Hamden, the Hamden Historical Society's DVD, "Hamden's Sesquicentennial Parade & Field Day," will be available on YouTube starting June 16th, the 80th anniversary of the parade. Stay tuned!
Multi-agency Rescue Exercise This Week at Sleeping Giant
[The website thanks the Fire Chief's Office and Dep. Chief Gary Merwede for providingthis articleand photos.)
On Wednesday May 4th the Hamden Fire Department participated in a multi-agency training session organized by the Yale New Haven Sponsor Hospital Program. The event was held at Sleeping Giant State Park in the historic quarry area to simulate a remote scene mass casualty incident.
Quarry at Sleeping Giant State Park - For decades the scene of many mountain rescues
Dr. Sandy Bogucki, MD, PhD, from the Yale University School of Emergency Medicine and the EMS Medical Director for the Sponsor Hospital program described the training as “designed to teach Emergency Medicine residents from Yale New Haven Hospital the basics of search and rescue and scene management at multiple casualty incidents.
The simulated scenario was staged at the quarry site on the grounds of Sleeping Giant State Park. With the assistance of personnel and equipment from the three response agencies, the physicians, who are training to practice Emergency Medicine in hospital ERs, used only what was available in the austere environment to triage, rescue, treat, and transport the simulated victims. They also experienced the challenges of setting up a command structure, requesting additional assets, including specialized equipment needed for managing such incidents in remote locations.
The Hamden Fire Department responds regularly to the state park for emergency calls, ranging from traumatic injury, medical events, and technical rescue to locating lost hikers. The HFD supplied manpower and equipment for the drill and worked in cooperation with personnel and equipment from the North Madison Volunteer Fire Company and American Medical Response.
We regret to announce the passing on May 1st of HFRA Honorary Member Mary Lane, who was longtime friend and companion of our deceased brother Firefighter Joseph Shields, who served with the Hamden Fire Department from 1959 until his retirement in 1980. Joe passed away in 2008. A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated in St. Rita’s Church on May 6th. Burial was in St. Lawrence Cemetery.